• November 17th, 2018
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Teenager dies from suspected Congo Fever


Loide Jason Windhoek-The family of the 19-year-old man from Okalongo in Omusati Region, who died early last month (February) after he was bitten by a tick, are still waiting for the state to inform them of the cause of death, although management at Oshikuku Catholic Hospital hinted the victim died from Congo Fever . New Era has learned that the deceased, Salom Frans David, had complained of unusual movements in his left ear. He then went to Oshikuku Catholic Hospital for treatment and it was found that there was a tick in his ear. David’s uncle Leopold Natangwe Hangalo, who spoke on behalf of the family, said doctors applied some medication to the ear but were only able to remove the tick some three days later. “He was just given painkiller tablets and sent home. A few days later he started complaining of a headache and the grandmother took him to hospital where he was again given painkillers. Thereafter, on different occasions he visited Oshikuku Catholic Hospital and Oshakati Intermediate Hospital with the same headache but was again given painkillers and some tablets to make him sleep, despite having a history of being bitten by a tick in his medical passport,” said Hangalo. On February 5 he again started complaining of a severe headache and he was rushed to Oshikuku Catholic Hospital but unfortunately he died on the doorsteps of the hospital where a doctor declared him dead. “Since he was not hospitalised, the matter was initially treated as a police case. We then took the body to the Oshikuku Police Station. The police did not have transport to take the body and they told us to take the body to the mortuary at Oshikuku hospital so that they could perform a post-mortem the next day,” said the deceased’s uncle. “On the 7th of February 2018 we went to inquire at the police station as to whether the post-mortem was conducted as we were preparing for his burial, only to be told to contact the Oshikuku hospital because the deceased was bitten by a tick and they suspected Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever. The police refused to conduct the post-mortem,” said Hangalo. “We were informed to come back the next day as the issue was referred to Windhoek. On the same evening we were contacted by the hospital that the deceased will be buried by the state due to the suspicion, and only two or three family members were allowed to be present and watch or observe the burial from a distance of 100 metres,” said Hangalo. The family now want to know why there are no protection measures in place for the family and whether the lives of those who took care of the deceased are not important. “When will the family be informed of the cause of death as the death certificate is written ‘undetermined’? queried the family spokesperson He said that the family had a second meeting with the hospital management as they really wanted to know what caused the death, and what would happen to the people who were in contact with the deceased, especially those who lived and stayed in the same house as the deceased, as well as the pupils at the school which the deceased attended. He said that at that meeting the family was informed that the decision to bury him within 24 hours in a six-metre deep grave far from people was taken in Windhoek, and that officials in the city said no post-mortem would be conducted but the family still wants to know the cause of death. Regarding those who were in contact with the deceased, a team of medical experts will be dispatched to visit the school and the homestead where the deceased lived. “We were told to look out for the symptoms of the fever and report it to the hospital management,” said the uncle, adding that the family are now eager to know why the doctor who removed the tick did not do a proper examination on the deceased while he was still alive. For the past three weeks New Era has been unable to get official comment but the Omusati Police spokesperson, Warrant Officer Lineekela Shikongo, confirmed the incident saying the deceased was indeed buried by the state.
New Era Reporter
2018-03-01 09:01:21 8 months ago

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